I have completed all shops on this route. This last post covers 6 days of shopping and the weekend in between weeks 8 and 9.
My week began when I left Las Vegas and drove 500 miles to Farmington, NM. I completed shops in New Mexico and Texas in this final stretch, ending in Athens, TX, which is about 75 miles southeast of Dallas. I spent the weekend in Abilene, TX. That was a most uneventful weekend as there is little reason for one to visit that town (no offense, Abileners). I saw Captain Phillips and Carrie while there and dined at a restaurant I discovered while in Texas, Rosa's Tortilla Factory. I love that place. The prices for the Tex-Mex flavors are comparable to Taco Bell, but the food is so much better. If you dine in, your food is served on real plates and there is a salsa bar. Plus, every meal comes with piping hot, freshly made tortillas on the side.
While in Abilene I did replace my wheels. I bought four aluminum wheels from a junkyard and had them installed at Wal-Mart. I don't like investing money in the S-10, but the holes in the wheels where the lug nuts attach to the studs (basically what holds the wheels onto the truck) were worn out.
After I left Athens I drove to Tunica, where I am spending four nights before driving to Nashville for the time share shop. In my expenses below I am including all my travel up to arrival in Tunica. My accommodations and food in Tunica are free. Thus far I have won a little cash so hopefully I don't spend too much on gambling while here.
Week Eight/Nine Gross: $1886
Week Eight/Nine Expenses: $1374
Week Eight/Nine Net Income: $512
All my expenses are being tracked through four categories: hotel, food, gas and other. I spent $66 on food. Hotel expenses were $583, just under $73 per night. I spent $320 on gas, $11 on movies and $394 on repairs. Hotels are much more expensive in certain parts of Texas (and Oklahoma) because of the oil boom. It's interesting that I paid $119 for a Comfort Suites in Midland, TX when a nearly comparable room at the Quality Inn in Farmington, NM was only $47.
Soon I will post a recap of my entire trip.